hot chorizo sweet onion dip huckleberry fudge california hand roll (temaki) hot smoked salmon and asparagus pasta


copyright jennifer yu © 2004-2014 all rights reserved: no photos or content may be reproduced without prior written consent

archive for baking

everything is awesome

Sunday, July 27th, 2014

Recipe: hot chorizo sweet onion dip

After spending a scorching day on the flats, Jeremy and I sat down the other evening to dinner and a movie in our living room. We don’t watch a lot of movies and there was a long list to choose from online. Both our brains were fried from the heat and a long day, so we agreed on The Lego Movie. We loved it. And now I have that song “Everything is Awesome” in my head. But you know what? Everything *IS* awesome.


pretty blanket flowers are blooming in our yard

mom and dad had us over for this delicious feast they prepared

toasting to life



Jeremy left for an out-of-town meeting on Saturday morning. I always worry that he’ll get stranded on the tarmac and starve, so I packed him a brie, prosciutto, and mixed greens sandwich on a baguette. And an apple. And potato chips. And some cookies. And a chocolate croissant. He departed for the airport late enough in the morning that it was already too warm for me to do a long trail run, but it was still early enough to grab a hike under wonderfully cloudy skies. So we drove in opposite directions from our neighborhood and I hiked into the high country. It’s been dry here, which would explain the utter lack of mushrooms (of any kind) on the trails of late. I’ve been scoping my huckleberries as well as the mushrooms. We need rain. They need rain. The mushrooms demand it!

I hoofed it up the trail at a good clip singing “Everything is Awesome” in my head. About an hour up, I approached a bend in the trail. My eyes are always scanning the woods around me for mushrooms, for wildlife, and for people (it’s the people you have to watch out for). I hadn’t encountered anyone all morning until a black bear stepped out of the forest onto the trail 20 feet in front of me. It had a full, healthy, black coat and looked to be an adolescent bear, slightly taller than a Great Dane and much fatter. My face lit up as I froze in place to avoid startling it. My gut instinct was to reach for my camera, but it was in my backpack. It hadn’t seen me yet. The bear was looking uphill as it strolled across the trail – doo dee doo dee doo. Then it casually turned to look around and spotted me. My presence gave that poor fellow a start and then the bear high-tailed it straight into the woods.

There was a huge smile on my face and I looked around to see if anyone else had seen the bear, but I was alone. It was my first bear sighting in our local mountains (I’ve seen them in town – sad…) and it was the healthiest, most handsome black bear I’ve ever seen. Note: black bears can be black, brown, cinnamon, even buff in color. I took a few steps forward to check if it was hanging out in the woods, but it was far away. And then I spotted my first porcini of the season. EVERYTHING IS AWESOME.


i named this one miguel



Jeremy was concerned that I would be sad and missing Kaweah in the house by myself. I do miss her, but I only tear up once or twice a day now. My folks came over for dinner Sunday evening because they think terrible things will befall me when Jeremy is out of town. I greeted them with a recipe that I had been wanting to make for years. It’s Todd and Diane’s adaptation of their awesome sweet onion dip and it is just as cracktastically addictive.

mayonnaise, parmesan cheese, cream cheese, black pepper, chorizo, sweet onion

brown the chorizo

dice the onion



**Jump for more butter**

quiche the fish

Sunday, May 18th, 2014

Recipe: smoked salmon artichoke quiche

I think it’s over. No more major storm tracks coming our way. We went backcountry skiing on Saturday only to find that the powder from 7 days prior had never formed into the coveted corn snow for which we had hoped. It was mashed potatoes at best, water slush at worst. There are reports of wet slides all over the backcountry, so it might just be time to hang up the skis for the season. 72 ski days isn’t so bad. It is my best season to date.


until october, my pretties

our glorious high country



While our skiing has been winding down, our trail runs have ramped up as we anticipate the melting out of the trails. Last week was relatively cool and overcast, but today was warm and humid (although thankfully cloudy) on my trail run. After the first hour all I could think was “How am I going to do this when summer rolls around?” I guess 4 am starts are not such a bad thing.

i love these feetures! socks



As the mercury rises, Kaweah’s stink factor increases exponentially. Thankfully the warm weather means we can wash her with the hose outside. Kaweah is not the aggressive sort, so even though she HATES baths, the worse she does is try to sneak away. In her geriatric state, sneaking away has become stumbling and falling. Jeremy held her up while we washed her, but when it came time to dry her off, we had to lay a towel on the driveway and set her down for her toweling. She’s such a good sport. And now she’s a fluffy, lavender-scented, soft, cuddly, good sport.

you did away with my dog stink! all that hard work for naught…



I thought Kaweah was losing her marbles last week because she kept begging for this hot smoked salmon I was using in a recipe. Kaweah likes anything, really, but she’s only insistent like that with a few things: raw beef (or any beef), peanut butter, cheese, carrots, apples, bananas, bacon. But hot smoked salmon? She’s never had that before, nor have we ever had it in the house before. Maybe it was this delightful quiche I was making?

dill, hot smoked salmon, cream, milk, red onion, eggs, nutmeg, butter, salt, pepper, artichoke hearts, goat cheese

the crust: flour, butter, salt, sugar, ice water



**Jump for more butter**

weekend jollies

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

Recipe: strawberry cinnamon rolls

Jeremy and I usually spend our weekends working because that’s when all of our favorite places tend to be the busiest. But after a long day of shooting (for me) and editing a scientific paper (Jeremy), we needed to get out for a break. My idea of a break is exercise in the great outdoors. And they really were great that evening, touting some of the finest spring conditions I’ve enjoyed in a long while.


there were clouds all around except for one giant blue sucker hole above us

excellent snow (fast, yet good grip for climbing)

skiing back to the car, we ran into a few thin spots



And then we got 8 inches of snow on Sunday. I’m not complaining! We usually get a big dump of snow the day AFTER our local ski hill closes for the season. At least this time it was on closing day. My friend, Sarah, asked me on Friday what I was going to do now that ski season (she meant resort ski season) was drawing to a close. I smiled and said, “BACKCOUNTRY skiing!” That’s part of the reason I wasn’t freaking out about skipping closing day. I wasn’t skiing it because of that whole weekend-crowds-bad-timing-of-the-powder thing AND because I was busy making a mess at home. But what a delicious mess it was…

dough: flour, vanilla, milk, eggs, butter, sugar, salt, yeast

pour the yeast over the warmed milk

mix in the sugar, butter, eggs, salt, and vanilla



**Jump for more butter**